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Old 05-12-2010, 18:19   #61
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Originally Posted by rebel heart View Post
For anyone else who dives their own boat, what tools are you using to keep the prop clean? I started diving my boat a few months ago and have the hull more or less figured out and can do all my zincs without dropping hardware (that took some iterations of learning).

The prop is pretty nasty right now, so I figure I'll need to go at it with a rotary sander of some type to blast the crap off when it's out of the water next. Once that's done and I drop it back in, what's the proper technique for under water preventive maintenance?

I drop in once a month or so.
I keep my boat in a very nitrogen-rich (high growth) area (western Long Island Sound). In recent 3 years I used Pettit Prop Koat with good results on the blades but poor success on the hub and shaft. This year I used the Prop Koat again but used Pettit Vivid on the hub and shaft. Results were very good.

The PropKoat is a bit pricey but will last years. I have a large 3-blade prop (19-inch diameter) and after 4 years I haven''t even used 1/4 of the can.

Only minor growth -- a few small barnacles easily popped off by a finger when diving with a snorkel. The boat is generally used at least once per week... wiped for slime about once per month starting around July 1. The boat is hauled for winters.

As for cleaning -- a metal scraper is the way to go. In past years when I had a lot of barnacles on the shaft I would use a construction pry bar called a "Wonder Bar". It has a scraper on each end but is much longer than a painter's scraper or putty knife so it keeps hands away from the sharp barnacles while scraping, and the side edges are rounded so they are fairly smooth. The Wonder Bar has enough mass so it plows right through even large barnacles and destroys them. You can run the smooth rounded side edge back and forth along a barnacle-encrusted shaft and simply crush them as the bar passes. Of course, a tool with this mass must be used with restraint to avoid damage, and that means it's easier to clean barnacles with it than a lighter scraper. No hammering or even hard tapping needed!
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Old 05-12-2010, 23:49   #62
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I think the rigid metal 10-in-1 scrapers work great for max-props etc while they are probably the wrong tool for a fixed prop.. because those have much more curves.

cheers,
Nick.
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